NYSED Doubles Down on Gender Insanity

New York parents, please take notice: The government and the educational establishment in the state of New York have fully embraced left-wing gender insanity and have taken drastic steps to impose it upon students, faculty, staff, and administrators in schools at all grade levels.

On June 12, 2023, the New York State Education Department (NYSED) released a new document entitled “Creating a Safe, Supportive, and Affirming School Environment for Transgender and Gender Expansive Students: 2023 Legal Update and Best Practices.” The stated purpose of the document is “to help public school administrators continue to take proactive steps to create a culture in which TGE, nonbinary, and intersex students feel safe, supported, and included.” This 42-page document reads like an excerpt from a dystopian novel like Brave New World or 1984.

Think we’re exaggerating? Think again. Here are some lowlights from this document.

  • The section on terminology contains definitions of 26 different terms, including terms like “cisnormative,” “gender expansive,” “misgendering,” and “queer.” The vast majority of these terms have no foundation in New York law; in fact, it is not entirely clear where they come from. The definition of “gender identity” is particularly illuminating: “One’s innermost concept of self, how one perceives and identifies themselves, including, but not limited to, male, female, trans, transgender, queer, nonbinary, gender nonconforming, or gender expansive. Gender identity can exist on a spectrum where some individuals feel entirely male, some entirely female, some somewhere in between, some a blend of both, and some neither. One’s gender identity can be the same or different from their sex assigned at birth. Gender identity is a mental, emotional, and spiritual state, which is not determined by a person’s external anatomy…”

  • In the section on “Understanding Gender Identity,” the document asserts that “the individual student is the sole person who will establish their gender identity.” Furthermore, the document indicates that “it is essential that schools accept and respect a student’s assertion of their own gender identity.” There is no age or grade level limitation on this instruction. In other words, if a first-grader insists that he is “transgender,” his school must respect his self-identification.

  • Schools are instructed to look favorably on damaging “transgender” medical treatments performed on young people. The document notes that “some [students] may express readiness to reinforce their social transition with medical treatments… School personnel may provide an affirming space for TGE students to share opportunities, challenges, and aspirations for their future including medical transition.”

  • Efforts to assist “transgender” students do not involve parents unless a student gives his or her permission. If your child is presenting himself as a member of the opposite sex in school, you can be kept completely in the dark about that fact.

  • Students must be addressed by their preferred names and gender pronouns. According to NYSED, it is against the law not to do so. This requirement forces teachers to lie about students’ names and gender identities, regardless of their own moral beliefs. Teachers are advised to “continually affirm the student’s self-identity. Doing otherwise could cause stress and emotional harm to the student.” Furthermore, the document asserts that “everyone should share their name and pronouns at the beginning of each school year, the start of meetings, and regularly throughout the year.” The document includes the following example of how schools should handle issues with names and pronouns: “EXAMPLE: A school sent their student roster to the yearbook company in the beginning of the year but then had a transgender student who changed their name midyear. The school took the initiative to reprint all yearbooks with the correct name.” A chart featuring examples of gender pronouns includes “nonbinary” pronouns like “ze,” “hir,” and “zir.”

  • School personnel are encouraged to avoid addressing students as “boys and girls” and are advised to eliminate “gender-based policies, rules, and practices” that “do not serve a clear pedagogical purpose.” Schools are encouraged to phase out single-sex gym classes. For guidance, school personnel are advised to consult “Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion and Accessibility staff.”

  • “Transgender” students must be allowed to use whichever facilities they prefer to use. The privacy and safety of students of the opposite sex is irrelevant. Under the Gender Expression Non-Discrimination Act (GENDA), also known as the Bathroom Law, a school may not request that a “transgender” student use a single-stall bathroom “because of someone else’s concerns.” In other words, if your teenaged daughter is uncomfortable with a teenaged biological male who claims to be “transgender” undressing or showering in her presence, or if she is uncomfortable undressing or showering in the presence of that same biological male, it makes no difference. That male can see your daughter naked.

  • If “transgender” students ask their schools to change their student records to “reflect [their] stated gender identity and affirmed name and pronouns,” schools should “honor” such requests. Schools are required to follow mind-boggling rules about “transgender” students’ records, privacy, and confidentiality.

According to the Albany Times Union, “The Board of Regents offered enthusiastic support of the update at Monday’s meeting, and Regents members said they need to do more to change minds in the community and at school board meetings. ‘There are parents actively fighting against what we are doing,’ said Regent Shino Tanikawa. ‘We cannot be complacent. We have to fight this in every sphere we have influence in.’”

When it comes to “transgender” issues in New York schools in 2023, three things are completely clear. First, parental awareness of their children’s so-called gender identities is optional. Second, the privacy and safety of students who are not “transgender” is irrelevant. Third, any perspective that does not affirm transgenderism is dismissed.

New York’s schools are determined to inundate New York’s students with a barrage of evil lies about sex and gender. Christians—especially Christian parents—have a responsibility to love our neighbors by countering these lies with the truth.

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